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Have you asked yourself lately, “What do I do with what I know?” The question itself presumes something ought to be done with what we know. Of course there is knowledge of things which probably won’t make a difference in one’s life. We are embedded in a culture that idolizes knowledge. For example, I must find out (know) how my “friends” are doing on Facebook. I must know. I must know how my favorite celebs and sports stars are doing, what they’re doing, what they’re thinking, so I read the latest blog or magazine or watch my favorite show.
We take it for granted in the western world that we have a wealth of knowledge concerning things of eternal significance. The question is: What are we doing with what we know? Does it stay in our heads with no consequence to our lives or relationships?
Knowledge about God is a gift from God. We ought to steward this knowledge well by doing something with it other than storing it in our brains. We need a knowledge that moves from our heads to our hearts to our hands.
I did not entitle this post with “What to Do with What You Believe,” because we often treat what we believe as mere speculative, natural, inconsequential knowledge. To a lot of Christians–even Chrisian leaders–belief in God is reduced to mere information unaffecting one’s heart and mission.
The apostle Paul warned Timothy that in the last days there will be people who are “always learning and never able to arrive at a knowledge of the truth” (2 Timothy 3:7). That is, there will be people who are doing a lot of churchy things; yet this knowledge has not yet sunk its roots deep enough into their hearts to move them to love the end of this knowledge, God himself.
When we meet Jesus face to face, He won’t ask us what we learned. He will ask us what we did with what we knew–for His name’s sake (see Luke 12:48). He has entrusted us with so many good things, including life-transforming knowledge. Where our mission is there our heart–our love–will be also.
It’s easy to be passive with what we know. It’s also easy to get distracted–to keep us from doing what we know we ought to do. So, we should be mindful of what we know.
Many of us are not conscious or attentive to the knowledge–the depth and width–of what we know about King Jesus and our allegiance to Him. One way I have learned to be mindful of what I know and to engage with it is by questioning myself. We can find biblical precedent for questioning oneself throughout the Psalms especially (See Ps. 42:5; 121:1-2ff.).
Last year, I began questioning what I know in order to provoke deeper thought, feeling, faith, and action. Here’s a sample:
Q: What do I know that needs to be acted upon without further hesitation?
A: I know that God is for me and that He is with me.
Q: Who is this God who is for me and with me?
A: This God is the Maker and Sustainer of heaven and earth, who knew me before I was born, who loves me and gave His precious Son for me.
Q: How is this God for me and with me?
A: The Scriptures tell me that God is working all things for my good, and that Jesus is with me always, even to the end of the age (Rom 8; Matt 28).
Q: So, how do I need to act on these truths?
A: I need to wholeheartedly trust that God will richly provide a job for me, and that He is leading me in the way I should go.
Whatever you do with what you know, know this: God is for you and He is with you.
J.T. Caldwell lives in Austin, TX with his wife and son, and works at WORDsearch Bible. He studied Historical Theology and World Mission at Dallas Theological Seminary. He formerly served as the founding editor and managing director at GCDiscipleship.com